How To Choose The Right Personal Injury Lawyer For You
May 10, 2019 08:44 PM EDT
Personal injury cases require a skilled legal practitioner to get you a competent and profitable closure. The Law Dictionary notes that as few as 5% of personal injury cases make it to trial with the majority of them being settled beforehand. Choosing an excellent personal injury lawyer requires you to do a little bit of research into what you want out of the case and what your lawyer's past successes were. For any client, you need to have a lawyer that understands the situation and is willing to help, as well as one who doesn't merely spring surprises on you without a moment's notice. Let's take a look at some of the pertinent information you need to be aware of when deciding on a personal injury lawyer.
Search Around for Initial Contact
While many personal lawyers tend to get their cases through referral, quite a lot of them still depend on search engines to help them get business. A simple google search of the term 'personal injury lawyer' as well as your location will help you narrow down the national figures to a more local selection of lawyers. Tapella and Eberspacher note hiring a local lawyer can have a lot of benefits, not least of all because different areas may have different stipulations regarding personal injury law. Once you've gotten a few lawyers and their numbers recorded, you need to do a bit of background checking to make sure that they are what you're looking for.
Consult Previous Professional Clients
Many professionals have had to deal with personal injury cases in their time. If you know a handful of them, you might be able to leverage their experience with one of the personal injury lawyers on your list. You can ask about how the attorney dealt with certain aspects of the case, how accessible he or she was and what sort of strategy he or she usually adopts. You should value the opinions of professionals above non-specialists because of the meticulous nature that professional cases typically entail. Attorneys usually take extra care when it comes to matters like those and hearing the firsthand experiences of a professional client may be able to tip the scales towards or away from a particular attorney.
Discuss Fees Beforehand
One of the hang-ups that many clients have with attorneys is that many of them have fees that don't get mentioned until they become due. As NOLO mentions, there are multiple ways that a settlement can be calculated if a client wins, and the amount the lawyer is paid should be taken into account before the agreement occurs. Knowing where you stand regarding payment of fees is an integral part of closing the deal with a particular attorney. Costs are usually paid out of your pocket, and if the agreement for payment states that the prices come "off the top," then the total amount available after the settlement is agreed upon is usually less. Make sure that you and your attorney work out these details before the contract is finalized.
Professional Experience in Law
While having a personal injury lawyer, like the Clark Law Office, can make it easier for you to win your case, you also need to be aware of how experienced this lawyer is. You don't want someone who only has a handful of wins under his or her belt, nor do you want someone who has been practicing law generally, but has just experienced personal injury cases a few times in his or her career. Additionally, some more experienced lawyers tend to hire interns and new graduates to work on cases below them, allowing them a bit of freedom with how they spend their time. Knowing who the person in charge of the workload is, whether it's the attorney, or one of their graduate hires, can put your mind at ease as to if your case is being competently handled.
A Difficult but Necessary Choice
Winning some cases is merely a matter of presenting the facts to the court, but the majority of the time, how that information is given makes the difference between winning and losing. Having a personal injury attorney that is both versed in the profession and specifically attuned to the needs of these kinds of cases makes the chances of winning a lot higher. Consulting a lawyer also has the benefit of informing you whether your case has merit or not and whether they consider the case worth pursuing. Knowing which lawyer to choose can make the situation a walk in the park, or turn it into a recurring (and potentially expensive) nightmare. It is a difficult choice, but one that is worth taking time to decide upon.